“Revoir Paris”, on Canal +: Virginie Efira as the victim of an attack, who is relearning to live in the capital


Mia (Virginie Efira) in “Revoir Paris” (2022), by Alice Winocour.


See Paris again. The title of the film is in itself a program. Firstly because there is nothing to suggest, through these two words, that the story is about a terrorist attack, of the type of the one in 2015 – Alice Winocour’s brother was at the Bataclan on the evening of November 13, and her experience inspired the director. Beyond that, the title tells us that after the deadly assault, the census of the victims, the care of the survivors opens another chapter, of a psychological order, where reconstruction passes through reconnection with others. .

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Mia (Virginie Efira) is a Russian translator. She criss-crosses Paris on a motorcycle and speaks at conferences, at Radio France, etc. She seems to be having a great story with Vincent (Grégoire Colin), head of a hospital department. One evening, while they are both having dinner at the restaurant, he receives a call and explains that he has to go back to work. Mia gets back on her Triumph, then, surprised by pouring rain, lands in a brasserie. A man (Benoît Magimel) celebrates his birthday there. He lingers for a moment on Mia. Then comes the sound of machine guns…

During the attack, which lasts barely a few minutes, the camera is discreet, almost reduced to a dim lamp, barely illuminating the bodies, trembling, hidden or already dead. After this traumatic moment, See Paris again rocks into a mental, geographical and sociological journey in the heart of the capital. It’s the most beautiful idea of ​​the film to rely on the “postcard” (chimneys and zinc roofs…) to better deconstruct it through the eyes of the heroine.

A Hitchcockian atmosphere

Returning to the scene of the killing, Mia discovers a victim support association created by a survivor client (Maya Sansa). She explains to him the concept of “diamond at the heart of trauma”, that is, those positive things that can happen and would not have happened without the event. On site, there is also Thomas (Benoît Magimel), metal pins on his left leg. It takes at least two people to remember, he told her.

Fiction draws on reality to weave the story. The scenario revolves around two axes. The first, predictable: the impossibility for Mia to reconnect with her life before, the couple problems that arise… The second, less expected: the need for the heroine to leave her home, her “comfort zone », to reach out to others and try to remember snippets of the tragedy.

A Hitchcockian atmosphere, softened by the humor and a certain relaxation of Benoît Magimel. In jeans and a leather jacket, Virginie Efira carries the film with her eyes, often in the fog, which come to illuminate sudden reminiscences. Her performance won her the César 2023 for best actress.

See Paris again, film by Alice Winocour (Fr., 2022, 105 min). With Virginie Efira, Benoît Magimel, Grégoire Colin, Maya Sansa, Amadou Mbow, Nastya Golubeva. Available on demand on MyCanal.


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